- Arts and Design
Sew A Toddler’s Baby-Doll-In-A-Blanket
Make An Amazing Baby Doll
If you read my doll cradle hub then you are expecting this hub on making a baby doll for our second granddaughter's second birthday.
What you couldn’t know, though, is that this baby doll in a blanket is a fast and easy sewing project.
Deciding To Sew A Birthday Doll Was An Accident
When we first planned the toy cradle project I hadn’t thought of making a doll to go in it. My mind was on the dolls she already has, but really, how could we send an empty cradle as a gift?
Looking online for available patterns turned up a new-to-me idea that seemed perfect for a toddler. I decided to alter the examples of an all-in-one blanket baby to fit a 2 year old’s little hands.
As you look over the following step-by-step and photos, keep in mind that you could make one of these larger or smaller. I designed this one to be something that a 2 year old could easily manage during play time.
After putting this project together I have to score it with a 9.999. My only regret is that I did not allow more time to practice making the doll’s head and face.
That's okay, though, because it wasn’t designed to be an heirloom. It is just something she can drag around, use as a pillow, and just generally toss about.
Then there's always next time. Little girls can never have too many baby dolls--just ask them. :) As a Christmas gift, or no special reason at all--I can make her another anytime!
If you make an heirloom baby doll in a blanket consider doing a hub so we can all see it and glean ideas for our own from it. Below, you'll find the method I used to make this one.
Project Description And Supplies
This doll is formed in a triangular shaped blanket. The body of the doll is inside the blanket and the head is attached to the outside. The step-by-step directions following this supply list show how easily the project goes together.
Before beginning a similar project it would be good for you to read through all of the directions and have the basics of what you will need on hand. Here is the supply list with some tips:
• A small bag of fiber fill--this project requires very little filling.
• Up to 1 yard of printed fabric for the blanket--you will initially cut 1 large square from the amount of fabric you use.
• Approximately 3 yards of ruffled trim--the length will be taken from the final cut of the blanket’s shape.
• A square of flesh colored fabric, approximately 10”--this will be cut down to a circle. I used a knit fabric to create my baby face and have some tips to share as a result:
First, I tried embroidering a face. That did not turn out so well on knit fabric. I’ll need to do more research and experimenting before I try that again. It would have worked well on woven fabric like muslin.
In my second attempt to make the face I used fabric dye markers, but that revealed another problem with the knit fabric. It surprised me and stretched into a big scary face. I tried hand sewing shaping into the facial features but they were just too big, too much of an alien look.
The third attempt was more successful because I designed the features with stretch in mind and I did more shaping of the face with needle and thread. I wound up with a sendable doll in a blanket from this try.
There are some great doll making tutorials out there, but I thought I had this wrapped up. After all, I only wanted to make a simple baby doll head! By the time I was on my third attempt I would have saved time to study the tutorials.
I’ll be using muslin the next time I try this, but I’ll be doing a little more research on the topic of creating baby doll's faces and forming the heads before I start.
• Transfer paper, embroidery thread, and/or fabric dye markers--there are several options for creating the doll’s face.
The approximate measures are not what you would normally see in a sewing project, but this is a work of art in progress and you can follow the guidelines to make any size doll-in-a-blanket that you desire.
How To Make A Baby-Doll-In-A-Blanket (with Photos and More Tips)
Refer to photos for extra tips on these directions:
1. Cut a square from your fabric. 1 yard of fabric will generally yield a 34” square. My project fo a toddler began with a square that was approximately 25” x 25”.
2. Fold the square into a triangle and cut the fold. You will have two triangles. Set one triangle aside.
3. Fold and pin one end of the trim to hide raw edge.
4. Pin trim to one triangle on the right side of the fabric. (Corners can be tricky and you might want to round yours off so you do not have to turn stitches on an angle. If you want to round the corners off, do it before separating the triangles--see step #2.) Fold the end of the trim as in step #3.
5. Sew trim and triangle together with a machine basting stitch.
6. On the long side of the triangle mark an opening 6” wide by finding the center and measuring 3” out to put your mark on the wrong side of the fabric.
7. Pin the second triangle to the first one, right sides together.
8. Seam the triangles together beginning on one side of the the opening, stopping at the other side of the opening.
9. Turn blanket right sides out and press seams, folding the opening’s edges inward to match the seam.
10. Using a simple pear shape (or flat bottomed oval) cut from an 8.5’ x 11” sheet of paper as a pattern, line up the wide end of the pear shape on the opening.
11. Machine stitch around the outside edge of the pattern.
12. Stuff fiber fill into the opening.
13. Pin the opening shut and stitch it closed.
14. Round off the corners of the flesh colored fabric and create a doll’s baby face in the center of the flesh colored fabric.
15. Hand sew a loose running stitch around the doll’s face then gather it up with the face side out. Pull it reasonably tight and stuff with fiber fill. Sew the opening closed over the fiber fill. You will have a round dolls head.
16. Give some shape the head by pushing the fiber fill around to form a bit of a chin and cheek bones.
17. Hand sew indentions into the corners of the facial features. I only put a hint of a nose on my doll.
18. If you wish, sew some of the trim onto the head to form a bonnet, or eve add yarn hair to the head.
19. Sew the dolls head to the top of the pear shaped doll body and to the the blanket. The head will be floppy--a great tool for showing a little one how to hold a newborn.
20. Swaddle the baby doll in its own little blanket. Pat its tiny tummy and say, “There you go!” :)
If you have any questions feel free to leave them in the comments section below.